Thursday, February 12, 2009

On the tip of my tongue

One of the symptoms of dementia, or Alsheimer Disease, is loss of short term memory. One feature of this phenomenon is when one cannot recall a familiar word or name or situation, but with much effort one may eventually recall the elusive memory.

Acquired Hydrocephalus also mimics this form of "presque vu". Meaning "almost seen" from the French, this term is the sensation of being on the brink of an epiphany. Often very disorienting and distracting, presque vu rarely leads to an actual breakthrough. Frequently, one experiencing presque vu will say that they have something "on the tip of their tongue."

My guess is that people suffering from any form of memory recall malady wouldn't appreciate l'esprit de l'escalier. They're too busy thinking of the appropriate word.

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Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica

Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica